tv [untitled] June 17, 2013 7:30pm-8:01pm PDT
so, i encourage any -- i encourage us to continue looking at how to use market street best. thank you. >> thank you. next speaker. good morning, supervisors. thank you very much for taking the time to listen to us. my name is paul valdez, a resident of the mission district and member of the san francisco bicycle coalition and respectful cyclist that rides down market street to get to my office on montgomery. [speaker not understood]. my perspective and awareness really changes on two wheels. i want to thank the sfbc for their continuous efforts for being a great force in helping to transform the streets of the city and to safe and comfortable places to ride. special thanks to mta and dpw for laying down fresh new pavement and vibrant bike lanes along market. my current commute down market street can be quite distressing. for instance, it begins on market street. once i turn right from valencia onto a shared lane marking or share, then about two blocks i
am somewhat protected by the post and narrow bike lane. however, after van ness, i am force today ride mid intersection in the bike lane located in the middle of the street sandwiches between cars, transit buses and muni track. [speaker not understood]. after that i'm force today become extremely aware of my surroundings block to block, pedestrians, confused [speaker not understood]. from motorists who speed by and stressed by fellow cyclists sharing the road, [speaker not understood]. additionally, [speaker not understood]. i suggest that you take a ride down this part of market street between the hours of 8:00 and 9:30 a.m. and experience it for yourself. bring your helmet. this is not safe for anyone. i feel that the proposed move to cyclists to mission street is absurd. scratch that option. focus time and resources to
bikeways along market street. test them out and get feedback. and i'm sure there are many areas of san francisco that are in dire need of a better transit infrastructure, but none more than market street. please do not delay the better market street any further especially [speaker not understood]. thank you. >> thank you very much. next speaker. good morning, chairman wiener and president chiu. my name is paul gallagher, i'm a resident in nob hill. i work as a middle school teacher. [speaker not understood]. thank you for taking the time to hear our comments today. i just want to express my concern about delays to the better market street project. i think repaving is great and that's made a big difference for me. however, it is still a dangerous street to ride and i think improvements need to happen sooner than later. i also want to echo my support for keeping bikes on market
street rather than mission even if the cycle track on mission street. i probably would not divert my commute to that street since i'm coming from the north and connecting to bart. there is little reason for me to be riding on mission. i think it would be similar for many other cyclists. also, i just want to express my desire for a cycle track which included an option 2, i believe, for a bikeway east of 8th street where i do most of my riding and where i see a lot of other cyclists. and, yeah, so, i think option 2 is probably closest to what i would lake to see as far as keeping bikes and pedestrians on market street. thank you for your time. >> thank you very much. mr. shaw? thank you, supervisors. randy shaw, director of the tenderloin housing clinic. i did write an article today about this asking the is ups to
break the logjam in chron.org. in the course of researching that story, supervisor chiu, i noticed in september 2011, all the points we're all making today, you made then. i mean verbatim. go check what the article -- so, i mean, when we hear -- and again, i love the folks at mta and dpw. they do great work in the city. but i think what has occurred is the overlapping bureaucracies and the attempt to involve multiple stakeholders has resulted in the gridlock. the two years after supervisor chiu expressed impatience, we're in the same place. i have noticed in my own experience in the tenderloin little saigon plan is much smaller in scope, trying to get two way street on eddie and ellis, had supervisor kim not taken the lead, it never would have happened. we never would have gotten the money. in fact, the first phase was stopped and not moving forward.
it took a supervisor, fortunately our district 6 supervisor, to step in and make that happen. and i think we have the same situation here where i understand that there are those who work for planning and cta and mta and dpw who feel like, wait a second now, we don't want the is ups interfering with what we're doing. but the reality is, as you both have pointed out, it's not moving forward. and, so, i think we need to turn to the elected officials to move this process forward and break the logjam. thank you. >> thank you. next speaker. hello, mr. chair, and mr. president. christopher dolan. i'm the owner of the dolan law firm on market street. i have a unique perspective to offer because i was an early investor on market street. my building is between polk and van ness which was a garbage pit when i bought the building 10 years ago. we know what's happening with twitter and construction. but i want to tell you what i've seen over the past 9, 10
years. i've seen that block come alive. and a big part of that vitality is the bicyclists who pass by every day. i want you to think of other things that bicycle traffic does in that area. it reduces crime because there's a human presence outside of a car that is nearby that brings a set of eyes to the roadway. you asked some questions about mission street. i don't think it is the appropriate alternative because that's where cars can get off market, where people can do their business, that leaves a greater accessibility for bicycles on market street itself. you asked questions about enforcement. i can see outside my window 10th and market. i saw the traffic was going to the right when there were good signs placed before you got to market street past tense tense. i see drivers get confuse and had proceed forward. and i think a simple detour sign would make it much better for people because they would know there is an alternate
route they can take. by moving people over to mission street you will create greater danger because they'll have to cross mission to get to 10th. as a business owner i can tell you it is beautiful to see people outside of my front window. and if by having greater bicycle accessibility on market it is a cycle that's created. i'm putting up a bike rack in front of my building because i want people to bicycle. my employees are now bicycling because it's there. and people are very adaptable. when those ballardses were put up on market, they changed their pathways, it became much better. please help me with market street to make it a better place for my business and my [speaker not understood]. >> thank you, mr. dolan. next speaker. my name is john mc donnell and i own market street cycle bike shop at market and reargue lin.
i spent the last 2-1/2 years investing in that business. because market street is such a natural bicycle corridor, i really strongly disagree with the plan to move bikes down to mission. i don't think it's the natural progression that cyclists will take. even if those lanes are built, i mean, unless you ban bicycles from market street, i see this plan as not really having a future. also there is a huge push for revitalization on mid market street. and bicycles are a natural part of that. the people you want on market street and in that corridor are the people riding bikes down there. they pump lifeblood into that area. as mr. dolan was just saying, you can see the changes that are coming around and a lot of it has to do with bikes. conversely, pushing bicycles off of market street will have the opposite effect and drain from vitality from it which is the last thing it needs right now. i know my block is on life support basically, except for the crack dealers who are doing
pretty well. i do want to thank this committee for their attention to this matter. it's vitally important soil would think that option 2 makes the most sense going forward. thanks very much. ~ >> thank you very much. next speaker. good evening -- afternoon. my name is -- >> good morning. i am embarrassed to admit i begrudge sometimes when i'm on muni [speaker not understood] like mr. miller. and this is wrong. this is fundamentally wrong here in san francisco. and it's not true in other cities. because they have grade level boarding of muni -- of their public buses. and if we have modern buses, none of the issues that have been brought up today by sfmta really do that much to speed boarding. and if we had grade level boarding so that wheelchair
passenger could get on the bus, that would do much more. so, along the lines of the $5 million that has been spent, i think it has been wasted. this could have bought five buses and i think that would be a better use of these funds. however, along the lines of what has been proposed here, i would like to see bicycle lanes stay or be improved along market street. i don't see how it would be an improvement to move them off. and furthermore, i see cars being something that is a vehicle for transportation to and from, and therefore in the long term i think the city should look at undergrounding as is done in broadway tunnel. taking this along folsom and howard street, undergrounding through the [speaker not understood] would be a much better option. and i hope that supervisor will consider this. thank you. >> thank you very much.
next speaker, ms. hodge. good morning. i'm kate hodge from the san francisco bicycle coalition. thank you very much, supervisors, for having this hearing this morning on this incredibly important topic. i want to cut to the chase here. what was missing from this morning? we are absolutely wonderful to work with all the wonderful people in the city. what's missing here is the timeline and more budget information in terms of longer term projects, better market street. [speaker not understood] make sure it stays on task. and also for the pilot improvements. really appreciate you getting into questions about those near term and longer term improvements. [speaker not understood] continue to make sure both the longer term and near term improvements stay on track. we are absolutely and the department of [speaker not understood]. that should not be the be all end all. many they touched on today. i encourage you to look for
more information of the timeline for both elements of this project and make sure we achieve these on time. [speaker not understood]. thank you. >> thank you, ms. hodge. next speaker. good morning, supervisors. thank you for holding this meeting. i'm zach spender, owner of huckleberry bicycles on market street between sixth and seventh. i want to express a strong opinion [speaker not understood]. i do see it also as a great means for improving traffic flow and particularly a great means of improving the environment on market street. market street' supposed to be the grand boulevard that everyone wants to flock to in san francisco. it's sub poed to be this great cause way that is beautiful, that is lively, and honestly particularly on my stretch of
market street, it's kind of scary. it isn't a pleasant place to be. i watch tourists get lost and scared daily. i watch citizens of san francisco rush to get through. it isn't that grand boulevard that everyone wants to see. and bikes have over and over again been proven to improve, the prove the environment, improve the safety, improve the flow of traffic. again, i support that wholeheartedly. i also want to express my disappointment in how long the better streets -- the better market street program project is taking. a couple years ago when we first signed our lease, we did it partly understanding that market street was under a great renaissance. and we believe in it and we believe it can still happen, and it is slowly happening, but honestly at this rate, market street isn't going to be tree designed until well after our lease is up and we're going to
have to decide whether or not to re-sign long before we see those improvements happen. thank you for listening. ~ >> thank you so much. let me call a few names before we get to the next speaker. william brancher. [speaker not understood]. [speaker not understood]. [speaker not understood]. rocky [speaker not understood]. good morning, supervisors. thank you very much for holding this hearing. my name is william thatcher. i'm a building owner on both the north and south side of market street between fifth and sixth. and seventh. i fully support. the market street solution. ~ i believe number 2. i'm very frustrated with the slow pace of it as you are, and hope that we can do something to move it along.
and the mission street alternative, [speaker not understood] the solution contributing traffic congestion on market street. thank you. >> thank you very much. next speaker. my name is jim frank and i'm here representing the transit riders union of san francisco. of course, as well for transit, we want to make sure transit gets better under this plan. it has to get better. it can't get worse and it can't stay the same. that's kind of what we've been hearing. we're worried there is not enough emphasis on transit. it's got to get better. we're going to spend all this money, it has to get better. let's make sure it's happening at the mta. also, we would like to know more details about the proposal. will consolidation actually work? let's find that information out before we go into the e-i-r. we want details about those sort of things. before you go to the e-i-r, let's not wait until that time.
kind of the short term proposal. let's move on those. let's do more forced right turns. i know we've been talking about the cost of those sorts of things. let's figure outweighs of doing it so we can actually see will those speed up muni so we can find out that information. fifth to third, let's do? car-free zones there because it's a ton of people. will that speed up transit? those are our main asks. thank you. ~ >> thank you very much. commissioner miguel. supervisors, ron miguel. i sense some frustration in both of your opening remarks and i have some of that myself. supervisor chiu, at the time i in 2011 when you introduced legislation [speaker not understood] citizens design review group, which i'm still technically chairing. we haven't met in over six months because there's nothing more to look at until people make up their minds.
you have mta, you have dpw and you have planning. and they're all working on this and for a bit of a change in san francisco, they're actually talking to each other and sitting in the same room, and this is' great. but if you remember back in 2011, my letter ~ which i happened to look at over the weekend acquainting me said this is starting in 2013. and here we are. we did get a little repaving on market street, and that's nice. very well done. but it's a patch work. we're supposed to be going from octavia down to the embarcadaro basically. then it was moved to 2015, then 2017. i'm sure in the next couple weeks i'm going to hear 2020 mentioned. it's getting to be a little ridiculous. this has to move along. it has to move along quickly because this was supposed to be the short-term concept.
the long-term 25-year concept will go probably to 20 40, does not have a single dollar ~ put aside for it. there is no long-term planning for market street. and, so, your successors in those chairs are going to be as frustrated as you are. >> can i ask one question, our former president of the planning commission. can you tell us, what were you charged with doing in 2011? we were charged to review the designs that were -- that were developed in order to deal with the pedestrian realm as much as the transit, how to have the redesign of market street actually make a main public space for san francisco. that's why we considered the plazas. we considered the intersections.
we considered the width of the sidewalks for the pedestrian experience. the whole thing has to be put together. it's not just transit and it's not just bikes, but it's the entire package and this has to be put together. and the group that was put together that i was asked to chair has the experience in that overall concept. so, until people makeup their minds on where they think this is going, there is not much else -- we've already looked at these designs. we've made our comments, basically until the e-i-r is finished now. there is no more statistical information to inform us. >> thank you very much. thank you. >> thank you. [speaker not understood]. good morning, supervisors wiener and chiu. i'm marvin brasso, i'm a member
of the pedestrian safety advisory committee and i'm here today to speak about safety enforcement which seems to be a concern of yours. i was just looking at an article in this morning 5 centsv chronicle collision showing need for cycling enforcement. i have been advocating for a program that exists in new york. i will share this with you, called the bicycle ambassador program. it is sponsored by something called the transportation [speaker not understood]. they encourage walking and cycling and use of public transportation. but they put bicycle ambassadors out on the street. it's a seasonal program. it runs from may through september. only costs the city -- transportation alternatives around $47,000. there are details and information that i gave to your clerk here. what they would do is they would be out on the street. they would speak politely to the bicyclists who don't follow the rules of the road, asking
them to take a pledge to stop at stop signs, stop at red lights, and to yield to pedestrians. they would also speak to pedestrians about not crossing the street without looking and making sure that they don't do it when they're using a cell phone or texting, that they can be safe, not jay walking. it would affect -- it would impact everybody. and i think it's not expensive. it might be something we should try. i've shared it with the mayor, with ed reiskin, with chief suhr. i've been advocating for this for a long time. i spoke about it at town hall meetings. so, i hope you will look at this information and consider it. it's not expensive. thank you. >> thank you, ms. brasso. [speaker not understood]. good morning, supervisors. thanks for holding this hearing on market street. my name is beth stamp, the
executive director of walk san francisco. i want to applaud, first of all, the consideration of pedestrians and of walking and public space in this project. that's very important. it's very important for a street where a quarter of a million people walk every day. market street is also according to the department of public health a high injury corridor in the city. and it's less because of the conditions on market street itself and more because of the cross streets. the traffic on market street is relatively slow and safe, but the cross streets as wide one way, often sort of speedways to the freeway, that's quite dangerous. one of the things they address is to narrow those crossings with build outs along market street and that's something we've seen a few of those in the designs for market street, but we'd like to see a lot more. it's a really simple solution. also, as has been mentioned, a
lot of cars pile up in the crosswalkses and that might be a good place for supervisor chiu's suggestion of camera enforcement, specific 67c.103 red light camera enforcement to stop cars from pouring over the intersections. ~ and endangering pedestrians in the crosswalks. in terms of transit, about half, i understand from mta, of all buses go along market street. so, this is a real opportunity to speed transit up city-wide. it was not at all clear that that opportunity is being taken. we need a clear goal and actions to actually speed up transit city-wide, not just on market street. and the mission option, it's not at all clear that would speed transit up at all. we have a couple of films coming up on the 26th and the 11th so there's more information at walk sf.org about those. thank you. >> thank you, ms. stamp. mr. hefner?
good morning, supervisors. thank you for this hearing and thank you for your semi enraged comments throughout the last hour. my name is nick hes and i'm a board member of the san francisco bicycle coalition and also sustainability director for the san francisco schools and of course i walk, bike, and take transit down market street with my son. my sons on a regular basis. like the other speakers, i'm concerned about the multi-year delays. i always say i feel like new york and chicago would have paved market street six times between the time we start talking about it and now. and i'm also concerned about the slow pace of the pilot. i really think those are a great opportunity to test some new ideas here in san francisco. ~ pilots one of them would be a car-free market street between fourth and fifth to have kind of pedestrian zone. similar to many cities where transit still is allowed to go through the pedestrian zone, deliveries can happen to a certain extent during certain hours. but for the most part a huge number of crowds in that
particular block deserve and have the freedom to move about freely as they would in the pedestrian area. i also would love to test the bike [speaker not understood] on eighth street. a something that happens during the next section of paving. one comment i'd like to make about the market decision. enlightened universities when they layout their campuses, they often don't pave pathways for students during the first year. they want to see which pathways students take. when they determine which paths ways students take they come back the following summer and lay down the bit of asphalt. [speaker not understood]. if the bike riders are voting with their wheels, so to speak, to go down market street, it would be foolish to do so. and i think market street being the most direct way to get to downtown deserves its own bike lane. for transportation reasons and to activate the space. thank you very much. ~ >> thank you very much.
ms. selby? good morning, supervisors, my name is [speaker not understood]. i'm a member of san francisco transit riders union and also a small business person who happens to be at polk and market. and prior to that i was at mason and market. so, i've had a long time on market street as both a pedestrian and mostly pedestrian and a transit user. and i wanted to point out, i depth hear this when i was listening to comments from my work ~ didn't that the buses go 5 to 6 miles an hour on this corridor. that is even fuller than our average and we are the slowest transit system in the united states of america, if not the world. so, i think we do really do need to think about the transit and how we can make these trips go a little bit faster in an easy, easy way to do that is to continue what's been a successful pilot is to make
more cars off of market and those cars have not caused congestion in places where those cars have actually, to some extent, as jane jacobs talked about in her last book, disappeared, which is very interesting. i also want to point out we call holiday plaza the pit when i was there when i worked at mason and market. it was the pit, it was a frightening place. lots of bad things going on. i really hope that some of the wonderful things laid out there will happen. and regarding robin brasso and what she was talking about, ambassadors, the wing party has already done thing, have people dress ed up as referees and they've actually gun out there with whistles and stuff like that and tweeted at the bicycles and the pedestrians and the cars to try and get them in a sort of fun engaging way to adhere to the law. thank you. >> thank you, ms. selby. is there any additional public comment? seeing none, public comment is closed. [gavel]
>> i want to thank everyone for coming out today, very helpful public comment. mr. nuru, would you like to make any brief final remarks? >> yes, supervisors. thank you for having the hearing. i do want to remind everyone that we have two more workshops and those workshops will go into detail with some of the designs that we are finalizing. i think as much as we're talking about the market street short track or cycle track, the mission street is also being presented. so, you know, and the mission street i think all the information we gathered has to be really first class cycle track for it to work. but there is also, you know, all the entrances to the stations we're looking at that are part of every market street project.
[speaker not understood] a lot of challenge, but we're going to do our best. also the design workshops and others, we turn everything over to environmental and during the environmental process also find out a lot of information. so, again, thank you for the hearing and it's been helpful. >> thank you very much. president chiu? >> thank you, mr. chair. and i want to just take a moment and thank all the members of the public that gave us feedback today and reiterate the fact this is a project that's been years in the making. i along with a number of my colleagues have expressed significant frustration over the pace of progress, but i'm not going to repeat that again today. we all know that early on in this project there was probably less coordination and overall management from all the various departments that we would have liked. that being said, i do think from that standpoint things have improved. i want to thank the department heads for their work, but we all know at the end of the day the success of this project will be measured on how we actually get this done. i know that there have been a number of questions that have been raised today around
enforcement, around near term pilots, around budget, how we ensure thisproject is going to work for the community. mr. chair, if it might be possible for us to continue this item at the call of the chair so that we can get ~ future answers to this and do regular check-ins to make sure this is on track, i have spoken to mayor lee about this and will continue to as i'm sure our chair has and others, and definitely want to do everything we can as a city to move this forward in a way that's going to work and really create that vision and reality for market street that i think we all believe in. >> thank you, president chiu. and i agree. i think we should continue to the call of the chair and keep this as a pending hearing so that we can maintain a tight collaborative oversight of the project. and, so, effectively ret